Proven health benefits of moringa
The Moringa: Tree of life with 300 virtues!
With a familiar almost banal appearance, the moringa is a somewhat puny tree, with light bark and rounded leaves. This urban and rural dweller, invisible to most of us, is one of the most energetic trees in our world.
Native to the southern Himalayas in northern India, Moringa Oleifera is commonly used in folk medicine, in Asia and Africa, for its many anti-diarrheal, hypotensive, bactericidal and laxative properties, before the Western science is not interested in it.
This miraculous tree was already popular in colonial times to replace the radish. Its seeds, because of their biodegradability, can be used for the treatment of drinking water, replacing aluminium sulphate; a product potentially harmful to health.
In this article, we are particularly interested in scientific progress linked to the nutraceutical functions of moringa. We are also exploring the secrets of the plant in the prevention and/or treatment of several chronic diseases.
Moringa surpasses all rivals in ORAC tests
Moringa is starting to generate growing interest in the food supplement industry due to its high antioxidant content, revealed by the ORAC test.
The ORAC test “oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity”, known in French as “absorption capacity of radicals derived from oxygen”, allows measuring the antioxidant power of food. ORAC is an analytical method that was developed over 20 years ago and was developed by scientists working for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) ).
The higher the ORAC index of a food, the more it is rich in antioxidants. Foods rich in antioxidants are widely believed to significantly reduce the risk of cancer, cell senescence and age-related degenerative diseases.
According to this measurement system, moringa powder reveals an unusually high ORAC value. This far exceeds the superfoods containing antioxidants, including the acai berry, dark chocolate and garlic.
This antioxidant activity of moringa is mainly due to its high content of bioactive polyphenols. In fact, numerous scientific studies on the antioxidant power of moringa confirm that it is particularly capable of reducing DNA damage due to oxidation.
Moringa, a digest of vital elements
The health properties of the latter have been attributed to the many bioactive components of the plant, including vitamins, phenolic acids, flavonoids, tannins and saponins. These components are present in significant quantities in various parts of the plant.
Its leaves are rich in vitamin A playing an important role in vision, growth and cell renewal as well as the maintenance of immune function. They are also rich in beta carotene, with a strong potential in provitamin A.
Moringa also contains vitamin C with a higher concentration than that found in oranges and vitamin E, with concentrations similar to those found in nuts. Acting in synergy, vitamins A, C and E contribute effectively to protect the organism from premature ageing.
It is because of this synergy that these vitamins have aroused interest as agents that can delay atherosclerosis, reducing the oxidation of low-density lipoproteins (LDL) and thus limiting or even preventing lesions. vascular endothelial cells.
Moringa leaves are a good source of flavonoids. The main ones found are myricetin, quercetin and kaempferol, at concentrations of 5.8, 0.207 and 7.57 mg / g, respectively. Flavonoids have been recognized for their antioxidant action and can have various therapeutic uses; hypolipidemic, hypotensive and antidiabetic among others.
Moringa is also rich in phenolic acids with antioxidant properties, including gallic acid, chlorogenic and caffeic acids, generally very rare in nature.
Alkaloids, tannins and saponins
Characterized by the presence of at least one nitrogen atom, the alkaloids have strong biological potential. They are used in the composition of several drugs, in particular those against malaria.
The tannins, on the other hand, serve as a chemical weapon against parasites. They have antioxidant, vasoconstrictive, anti-inflammatory, astringent and anti-diarrheal activity as well as a protective and drying skin role.
Finally, the saponins contained in the plant, by virtue of their multiple apoptotic actions on cancer cells, can provide a new range of anticancer agents. They are also effective against drug-resistant cancer cells.
Proven health benefits of moringa
The most amazing thing about Moringa is that all parts of the plant, including its bark, are a reservoir of nutrients.
Thus, this plant has countless health benefits and has the ability to cure several diseases. For this reason, it is called “tree of life” or “miracle tree” and is widely used for nutraceutical purposes.
Among the most sought after moringa activities are:
It has been shown in several scientific studies that extract from different parts of moringa can exert antimicrobial potential. In addition, root extracts are said to contain an active antibiotic, pterospospermine, which is said to have potent antibacterial and fungicidal effects. The plant could, in fact, represent an economical and safe alternative to treat infectious diseases.
Arthritis is an inflammation of the joints known for the pain and the feeling of discomfort it generates. Arthritis can also lead to cardiovascular, bone or even kidney complications. Beyond conventional treatments, there are also natural solutions. Moringa is one of them.
Associated with a natural analgesic effect, moringa acts on inflammation by inhibiting pro-inflammatory molecules, which are the mediators in any inflammatory process. Moringa leaves also seem to act on both the initial and late stages of inflammation.
Like all other parts, the human liver also benefits greatly from the consumption of moringa. A considerable reduction in the level of liver enzymes due to the constraints of a poor diet can lead to an insufficiency of the liver to filter the blood.
By reducing oxidative stress and contributing to the increase in proteins, moringa contributes to filling the lack of production of enzymes.
In addition, thanks to its high content of caffeoylquinic acid, moringa stimulates the secretion of bile and the elimination of toxins, by ridding the body of metabolic acids which otherwise clog up the liver.
To date, the preventive strategy against neurodegenerative diseases is still essential due to the rapid growth in its prevalence and the limited nature of therapy.
Neurodegeneration is a chronic disease of the nervous system that affects neurons, condemning them to certain death.
Several studies have demonstrated the neuroprotective effects of moringa leaf extract on neuronal degeneration.
According to these studies, the polyphenols in moringa can improve cognitive performance in the elderly. In patients with Alzheimer’s disease, it would similarly improve memory and cognitive functions.
In developed countries, people have turned to alternative or natural moringa-based therapies to avoid the impacts and high costs associated with chemotherapy.
Very recently, researchers have studied the remarkable effects of the leaves and bark of Moringa oleifera on breast cancer cells and those of colorectal cancer.
They discovered that extracts of Moringa oleifera cause cell death and cell cycle arrest induced by apoptosis, associated with remarkable changes in the phenotypic properties of cells in the cancer cell lines in question.
Blood sugar regulation
Moringa considerably reduces obesity and is very effective in combating the risk factors linked to the metabolic syndrome leading to diabetes.
Due to the presence of isothiocyanates in moringa, it helps absorb the excess sugar formed in the blood. A 2009 scientific study showed that the consumption of moringa leaves as an infusion reduced the blood sugar level of diabetics with hyperglycemia.
In the list of claims published by the EFSA (European Food Safety Authority), there is even a claim relating to blood sugar which states that moringa contributes to the maintenance of normal blood sugar, with the use of an equivalent 4 grams of moringa leaf powder per day.
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How to choose the best moringa
Even if it resists drought, the moringa plant remains vulnerable to attack by parasites. Some producers are quick to include chemicals and pesticides to control these pests.
However, traces of these products remain present, even after rigorous treatments of the plant. Certified forms from organic moringa cultivation are therefore to be preferred.
Also, vegan moringa supplements are less likely to contain contaminants of animal origin, such as growth hormones and antibiotics.
If you opt for Moringa capsules, it is important to check the absence of excipients, additives and preservatives such as lead, mercury or PCB, titanium dioxide and magnesium silicate. If on the other hand, you choose powdered moringa, check that the colour is bright green. If the green turns to brown or bronze it is that the quality is compromised.
To be even more sure of the quality of your moringa, it would be wise to choose moringa subjected to third-party laboratory tests, for the detection of harmful contaminants or the verification of the density of nutrients.
Finally, be sure to evaluate the price of your supplement per gram if you buy powdered moringa and per capsule when purchasing capsules. Then compare the prices between different companies.
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Dosage of moringa
The proper dose of moringa depends on several factors such as the age of the user, their health and several other conditions. The recommended dose is usually 2 to 5 g per day, gradually increasing the doses to 8 g.
To promote good health and give vitality: 1 teaspoon of moringa leaf powder per day (1 teaspoon = about 3000 mg) is more than enough. To detoxify, prevent or relieve ailments, it is advisable to take 2 teaspoons of moringa leaf powder daily.
If you count in capsules, just see the composition of the bottle to know how many capsules you should consume.
In view of all the data presented in this article, it seems obvious that moringa should be encouraged in addition to a balanced diet, in order to improve the quality of life and strengthen the body’s immune functions.
Adverse effects, dangers and contraindications of moringa
Very few side effects have been reported in relation to the use of moringa, however, as with any alternative or complementary treatment, it is best to consult your doctor before adding moringa to your diet. Indeed, the association of moringa with certain drugs may be contraindicated, especially in the case of taking levothyroxine; a medication prescribed for thyroid problems.
Even though moringa is beneficial for boosting thyroid function, it could decrease the amount of levothyroxine absorbed by your body. Taking moringa with levothyroxine could, therefore, decrease the effectiveness of levothyroxine.
It is also not recommended to combine it with medicines that can be broken down by the liver because moringa could decrease the speed with which this occurs.
Also, morina, is known to lower blood sugar, it would be prudent not to combine it with diabetes medications to avoid hypoglycemia. The same goes for hypertension medication because moringa lowers blood pressure considerably.
When consumed in excess, moringa has laxative and purgative properties. Pregnant women should not consume it because it would be abortive. In addition, it contains a high content of vitamin A, which is dangerous for the fetus.
The bark of moringa roots is very toxic because it is rich in alkaloid moringin, a component similar to ephedrine which has paralyzing functions of the nervous system. Unless you are sure of the prescribed dosage, it would be better to seek the advice of a specialist before administering it.
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